Bridgestone: Marquez marches to the top of the timesheets in Friday practice at Indy

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Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Soft & Hard. Rear: Soft, Medium & Hard (Asymmetric) on a dry circuit in Indianapolis

Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez led a Honda 1-2-3 in the first day of practice at Indianapolis MotorSpeedway as the MotoGP rookie set a scorching lap time of 1’39.502 in the afternoon’s Free Practice 2 session.

Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team
Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team

Photo by: Repsol Media

Marquez’s best time was within half a second of the Circuit Record and just eight-hundredths ahead of second-placed Dani Pedrosa on the other Repsol Honda RC213V. Fresh from his first MotoGP pole position and podium at the last round in Laguna Seca, LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl was third quickest on the day and a further tenth of a second behind. Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro was the pick of the CRT riders, his best lap time of 1’40.750 putting him within striking distance of the top ten in P11.

The morning Free Practice 1 session took place under cloud cover which kept track temperatures low, so riders chose softer slick options front and rear to get a feel for the grip level of the circuit. Track temperatures were much higher for FP2 and accordingly tyre choice was more varied, with both the softer and harder slick options front and rear being evaluated by riders. Almost all riders set their best time on the softer rear slick, but those riders that assessed the harder rear slick were able to set competitive lap times so further evaluation of this specification is likely to take place in tomorrow’s FP4 session.

Similar weather conditions to today are expected for tomorrow’s qualifying sessions with the MotoGP riders next on track for the final ranked practice session; FP3, at 955 local time (GMT -4).

Masao Azuma – Chief Engineer, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department

“Track conditions this morning weren’t the best with low grip levels and cool track temperatures, and as a result some riders experienced graining on their rear tyres but it wasn’t enough to impact tyre performance. The cloud cover from the morning lifted in the afternoon so track temperatures increased and riders were able to assess all the slick options. With different types of tarmac, parts of this circuit are usually quite greasy and that was the case again this morning but this will hopefully improve over the weekend as more sessions take place and rubber is laid down. Tyre performance was very good today and lap times were quite quick with Marc’s best time just 0.5 seconds off the Circuit Record, so qualifying tomorrow should be very exciting.”

Bridgestone Motorsport

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Series MOTOGP
Article type Practice report
Tags azuma, brickyard, bridgestone, ducati, honda, indianapolis, motogp, practice, yamaha